Sarah Roush

I am certain, after the events of the last couple of weeks, that I am not the only person who has been saying (or thinking) “what the heck?” after hearing the evening news. It seems like the whole world has gone insane and there is so much anger and hatred everywhere we turn.

I know a lot of it is media driven. “If it bleeds, it leads” is a real thing in the industry. Sensationalism and fear, sells, and, there is big money to be made from anxiety. Manage the information in such a way that it creates a bigger divide amongst the community and suddenly — you have a gold mine.

I wonder what would happen if the media industry, took a different approach. Instead of a 24 hour news feed of atrocities, what if they gave it five minutes, decried it as shocking, obscene and unacceptable behavior — then shut it down. Maybe start talking about the amazing things happening across our nation.

Tell me about the school teacher who offered to take two little girls he once had in class to the father-daughter dance after their daddy died earlier this year.

Tell me about the family who helped the home health care worker for their mother realize her dreams by raising funds for her college tuition.

Tell me about the community who took over an empty lot and created a garden so that everyone could have fresh and nutritious food.

Tell me about the volunteers who assisted a family struggling while their loved one slowly dies from a terrible disease.

Tell me about the school who is helping students live healthier lives through play, helping them focus, learn and become better citizens.

Tell me about the little boy who creates and gives away teddy bears for sick children.

Tell me about the school principal who is teaching little boys what it means to “be a man” as they grow up without one in their homes.

I don’t want to hear about ethnicity, economic status, educational background and I sure as heck don’t want to hear about their sexuality. I just want to know there is still goodness in the world and that the things that are being used as tools to tear us apart, and, create hate, don’t matter so much for most people.

I want better for my boy. I want him to grow up believing that people’s actions and words are more important than race or economic divide. I want my little blue eyed, pasty white, blonde to believe his best friend, a brown eyed, brunette with caramel skin tone, look alike because they have matching t-shirts with dinosaurs on them. I want him to be able to not have to think twice about befriending someone because they are “different”, because, honestly, we are all different. Everyone has some sort of “hitch in their get-along”, which is what keeps us from being bored to death by each other.

I think most people want the same thing. It’s time we worked to come together, as neighbors, friends and decent human beings. Maybe, then, just maybe, there will be less hate, less anger, and less ugliness for the 6 o’clock news to sell.

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